Walkabout: Upper Lawrenceville Looks To Revitalize Without Losing Grit

Locator map with the Upper Lawrenceville neigh...

Locator map with the Upper Lawrenceville neighborhood in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania highlighted. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

While so many neighborhoods are casting about to reinvent themselves as vibrant post-industrial places, denizens of Upper Lawrenceville want to tie a vibrant future to the industry that remains.

They began developing a new vision for the neighborhood, referred to by some residents as the 10th Ward, in a series of three meetings that Lawrenceville United and the Lawrenceville Corp. initiated last fall. With $15,000 from the Design Center, they hired Christine Mondor of evolve EA, a design firm in Friendship, to lead the sessions, with help from Chelsea Burket, a community strategist with Fourth Economy, a consulting firm on the North Shore.

The Ancient Order of Hibernians‘ hall on Carnegie Street was standing room only for each meeting. The process linked natives of the neighborhood, old and young, to relative newcomers, many of whom have found the last affordable part of Lawrenceville.

After a final meeting last week, they embarked with a new plan and strategies to enliven the neighborhood without sacrificing its authenticity.

Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/stories/local/morning-file/walkabout-upper-lawrenceville-looks-to-revitalize-without-losing-grit-672447/#ixzz2JPx0UOeV

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South Bethlehem’s ‘Front Door’ To Get Makeover

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Northampton C...

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Northampton County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Bethlehem Mayor John Callahan announced Thursday the design of several grant-funded projects aimed at sprucing up the “front door” to southeast Bethlehem.

Those projects will include building a gathering space at the popular SkatePlaza, an economic analysis of how to redevelop properties, wayfinding signs and connections from the rails-to-trails park to neighborhoods.

The profiles of the neighborhoods near E. Fourth Street and Daley Avenue are quickly rising as the Sands Casino Resort Bethlehem continues to draw visitors and Route 412 expands to accommodate more traffic.

“With changes that have taken place here, the eastern gateway is the new front door of Bethlehem,” Mayor John Callahan said at a news conference at the Forte Building.

Read more:  http://www.mcall.com/news/local/bethlehem/mc-bethlehem-south-side-projects-20130124,0,701344.story

Center City Allentown Construction To Bring 900 Jobs

English: City of Allentown

English: City of Allentown (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The concrete foundation of Allentown‘s $272 million arena complex has begun to rise at Seventh and Hamilton streets, along with the number of yellow-vested construction workers.

It is a welcome sight to an army of local tradesmen whose livelihoods took a beating in the Great Recession.

For ironworker Carl Graves, 33, of Easton, the arena project didn’t just put him back to work in a tough construction market, it gave him his family back.

With construction in the Lehigh Valley at a near halt the past four years, Graves has had to accept jobs as far as 100 miles away. During his six months working on a job at New York University Medical Center last year, the four-hour round-trip commute left him little time to spend with his wife and sons, ages 5 and 1.

Read more:  http://www.mcall.com/news/local/allentown/mc-allentown-arena-union-jobs-20130119,0,4563413,full.story

Majestic Developer Plans 1.75 Million-Square-Foot Warehouse At Former Bethlehem Steel Site

California billionaire Ed Roski Jr.’s company plans to build what could become the Lehigh Valley‘s largest warehousing facility on a remote part of the former Bethlehem Steel plant.

Plans scheduled to go before the Bethlehem Planning Commission next week show a 1.75 million-square-foot warehouse and manufacturing facility at 3215 Commerce Center Blvd.

That’s nearly 50 percent bigger than the 1.2 million-square-foot warehouse Liberty Property Trust built last year on another portion of the former plant, and nearly twice as big as the Nestle warehouse off Interstate 78 in Lehigh County.

Pete Reinke, vice president of business development at Lehigh Valley Economic Development Corp., said he knew of no other warehouse in the Valley bigger than what Majestic is proposing.

Read more: http://www.mcall.com/news/breaking/mc-bethlehem-majestic-big-warehouse-20130104,0,5448712.story